Royal School Visits Wolverhampton X-Ray Department

30 May 2018

Published in: Member News

UltrasoundTo support the Medical Imaging section of their curriculum, a group of 11 A level Physics students from The Royal School, Wolverhampton had an educational visit to the Imaging department at Nuffield Health Wolverhampton Hospital recently. This is just one of the ways that the private hospital in Tetttenhall gets involved with the local community.

During their three hour visit at the end of April, they had three presentations, quizzes and got hands on with the equipment. The event was sponsored by Philips, who provided goody bags for everyone and brought in the latest technology US scanners and created a number of practical demonstrations which the students could get involved in, including ultra-sounding each other's upper limbs.

Imaging Manager, Lucy Willcox says, "In X-Ray, the students had a go at manoeuvring a digital x-ray system and an Image Intensifier, which is used to produce live images in theatre. In the MRI suite we showed them the different pieces of equipment we use to scan each area of anatomy. Whilst the scanner was not in use, they had the opportunity to lie on the scanner bed and experience what it's like to move into the scanner and we created a demonstration model so that they could safely experience the magnetic pull and torque of the scanner."

Clinical Applications Specialist from Philips Kalpesh Makvana brought in two of the latest Philips US systems, including a probe which can be plugged into an iPhone or iPad and used to scan in war zones. He demonstrated the advancements in technology and the students had a go at scanning the tendons, ligaments and muscles of each other's upper limbs.

One of the foundations of Nuffield Health's values and beliefs is to deliver significant and increasing public benefit. Lucy says "This was a great opportunity for us to demonstrate our values and contribute to students in our local community. Our radiographers Sue Roberts and Rebecca Kettleborough found it rewarding to share information that they are so passionate about and the students enjoyed being able to ask the experts. It was great for them to be able to see these pieces of equipment in clinical settings rather than just see pictures in a text-book or online."

The students learned that neither Ultrasound nor MRI use ionising radiation to produce images. Each modality has its benefits and the type of scan your doctor requests will be chosen depending on what they are looking for. The potential benefit of the clinical findings of the scan will always outweigh the potential risk of the dose of radiation you receive. Lucy says, "We like to use the analogy that a chest x-ray gives you the same dose of radiation as you'd receive in "background radiation" on a return flight from the UK to USA."

Physics teacher Michelle Clayton, from The Royal School wrote to the hospital to thank them for hoisting the educational visit, saying, "Thank you so much for the visit and the time given for us to learn more about imaging. We really appreciate it. We were all amazed by the speed at which projectiles can be pulled into the MRI scanner, with something as small as a paperclip being able to fly into the scanner at over 30mph. "

Lucy  would like to thank everyone who supported the visit and adds that staff really enjoyed it and the students were enthusiastic and involved.

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